River cruises, Maastricht
One of our days out during the VT Aachen Euromeet 2015 was a trip to the "caves" at St Pietersberg. This involved a short river trip from the city, about 15 minutes going and 25 returning. The boat, run by the Rederij Stiphout company, was suitably impressive with its sun deck, wood-panelled restaurant and lounge and of course a well-stocked bar.
Admittedly the scenery wasn't particularly stunning on this stretch of the river but there was time for a quick beer on the way out and a relaxed one on the way back. Service was swift and friendly and despite having a captive market the beers were reasonably-priced at 4.50 euros for a large one.
As well as the regular St Pietersberg run the company offer a variety of other cruise options including a day trip to Liege and evening dinner cruises. Website has all the details.
As part of an excursion that our host Valentina had organised, we took a short ride on a boat on the Meuse. The boat itself was, I think, quite old and beautifully kept, with lots of polished wood inside. On the way to Sint Pietersburg caves (see separate tip) we sat outside on the rear deck as it was sunny. There were no especially interesting sights, that I could see, but it was pleasant to relax here and watch the banks slide past. I ordered a coffee to drink, not realising how short the trip would be – half the coffee was wasted! Somehow I had imagined a much longer trip, but it can only have taken about 15 minutes to reach the dock for the caves.
However on our return we sat inside, as the weather had got cool and rainy, and we had longer, because the boat goes a little further along the river before turning back to the city, so I was able to relax and enjoy a small beer with VT friends. The boat seemed equipped for much longer trips, with a well-stocked bar and food available, and I think this could be a pleasant outing from Maastricht. For us though it was more a means of getting to the caves I guess, and as such was fine.
Several companies seem to offer trips on the Meuse but I’m pretty sure that ours was with Rederij Stiphout who seem to offer the widest range of excursions, including one to St Pietersburg. Other possibilities include a day cruise to Liège or simply one around Maastricht passing through four different locks. The company get mixed reviews for the quality of their trips; I've seen some criticism of the Dutch-only commentaries and the lack of pretty scenery (though the company can hardly be blamed for that!) I have to say though that I enjoyed my brief time on board, the boat itself certainly impressed me and the crew were friendly (and helpful to one VT member who missed the landing at the caves).
Saturday May 23, 2015
A part of our Maastricht VT Program was an organized CRUISE ON THE MAAS and also visit the caves.
Valentina booked with REDERIJ STIPHOUT which is located in the city center near the Marketplace.
Our group met at the Tourist Information Office and then we walked a short distance to the docks where we boarded our tour boat at 12:00 p.m. After a short (20 minutes) boat ride, we came to the docks were passengers go ashore at the Sint Pieters Hill for a guided tour of the Marlstone Caves. The group was to have lunch after the caves and then head back to the dock for the rest of the boat tour.
That was the Plan for most of us. Hans and I had to use the "Toilet" just before we got off. Hansi got off, but ole LoriPori did not. As I made my way to the exit, I saw the Captain close the door and the boat started moving. All I could do was wave to everyone on shore and hope that they took the same boat back.
I explained my dilemma to the Captain and he said not to worry, that the group will come back on the same boat after the cave tour and lunch. PHEW!
I stayed on the boat, for the next tour and there waiting for me at the "Caves Dock" was my Hansi.
As it turned out the "Hill up to the Caves" was very steep, so I decided to not go up. So we not only missed the Caves Tour, but we missed lunch. C'est la vie! as they say. Leave it up to me to have a "LoriPori Story".
This Pallieter boat will take you to explore the River Maas for one half hour.
you can drink something inside the boat, while sitting and enjoying the view of the Maas.
Combinationtickets tram and boat: Adult=€8. Children 6yrs-12 yrs=€6. Children under 6 yrs= free. 65+=€7 and groep of 20 pers=€7.
Taka river cruise to St. Pieterberg and stroll around this hill.
The cruises go by the hour. The last boat back to the city from St. Pietersberg is at about 5:15pm.
St. Pietersberg hosts a nice cafeteria, ice kiosk, castle ruine, church and view points to Maastricht.
Guided tours through the Grotten do start at about 10 to the hour.
The boat takes about 25 minutes each way.
If you take the boat at 2 pm. You arrive in St. Pietersberg pier at about 2:25 and your tour starts at 2:50. So plenty of time for a local beer or two.
It is a little bit cold in the grotten so bring a jumper with you.
If you would ike to see maastricht from the river Maas? Then step aboard on one of the river boats. They are waiting for you throughout the summer season.
The boats takes you pass from the city, some governmental buildings, from the St Pieters caves and it goes as far as the Belgian border and returns.. Tour lasts around 50 minutes.
Tickets are adults 5,75 Euro, Departure every hour from 10:00 to 17:00.. You can also take a tour including a visist to the caves..
Would you like to see a city from the river Maas? Then step aboard on one of the river boats waiting for you throughout the summer season. Your host on the cruise takes you along Mount St.Pieter, the hill with the famed limestone caves, to the complex of sluices at Ternaaien ( Belgian border ) and back again.
I love boats. So I certainly would recommend the boattrips of Rederij Stiphout on the Meuse (Maas). You can even go al the way to Liege.